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    dots Submission Name: Playing Cards With Grandmadots

    Author: Emerging Soul
    ASL Info:    48/VERY female/Wisconsin
    Elite Ratio:    4.36 - 1240/1114/244
    Words: 607
    Class/Type: Story/Serious
    Total Views: 829
    Average Vote:    No vote yet.
    Bytes: 3454

       My daughter, Nicole, was very close to her grandparents as she grew up. They babysat her while I worked and never lived more than a couple of blocks away from us.

    In October of 2001, my mother-in-law suffered a massive stroke that left her completely bedridden and disabled for ten months before she finally slipped away from congestive heart failure in July of 2002.

    Since then, my father-in-law, who was married to his wife for 58 years, has gone crazy. We tried to take care of him and give him love and support, but he began drinking and gambling and going to strip bars, picking up young women (he's 82) half his age and sending them money, etc.

    Last week he got married to a woman 30 years his junior...a woman that has already gone through 5 husbands. The last one, she divorced when he was 84, after she had bankrupt him and put him in a nursing home.

    Naturally, the family is in an uproar...everyone angry and in disbelief that he would be so incredibly stupid and basically turn his back on his entire family (8 children and 28 grandchildren) in favor of this woman.

    My daughter, in particular, is hurt and confused. She still loves the memory of the man who was once her grandfather...but says that he is not the same person any more.

    She told me today that last night she had this dream...a dream that she was sitting at the kitchen table, like she had done hundreds of times over the years...playing cards with Grandma...

    Make the font bigger!! Double Spacing Back to recent posts.

    dotsPlaying Cards With Grandmadots

    "Don't be mad at him, Nicole" she said, as she drew 3 cards from the Rummy deck (she was only supposed to draw 2...but Grandma was a notorious card-cheat and always tried to slip in an extra card here and there, and I never had the heart to call her to task for it).

    "I'm not MAD..." I said, drawing two cards and laying down a match to her Jacks on the vibrant table cloth that she had sewn out of fabric remnants years before.

    "I just can't believe he actually DID it...I mean, what was he THINKING?!?"

    She fumbled with the cards in her tiny hands, trying to draw out a small run in diamonds and lay them on the table.

    "Koff meir dumma, eh?" she exclaimed, clucking her tongue. I smiled at the foreign slang that I had grown up hearing from the diminutive woman that was my Grandmother, and could feel a pang of sadness in my heart because I knew that I was only dreaming...and I miss her.

    She seemed so real, sitting there across from me...I could feel the intensity of her little blue eyes that always seemed to carry the spark of life in them even up until the end.

    She reached across the table and put her hand upon my arm, and I knew that there would be tears in those eyes for a moment as we both choked up a bit, realizing this for what it was...a brief moment together again...more than just a dream...a message.

    "He's weak, Nicole," she said. 'I always knew he'd do this...I told him all the time that I knew he'd go whoring the first chance he'd get and be stupid."

    I laughed through my tears, hearing her speak so matter-of-factly about it all.

    "He should have died first, you know," she said. "I always hoped that I wasn't the one to go first...I'm a strong woman. I could take it. He's weak. He can't be alone. He can't take it that I'm gone, that's all it is. He doesn't care anymore...and he's lonely."

    "I understand that, Grandma," I said. "And I'm trying to remember him the way he used to be. But it's sad...first I lost you...and then I lost him, but he's still here. I don't know what hurts more."

    She sniffed for a moment and wiped her eyes, then discarded two cards when she thought I wasn't looking.

    We didn't talk much after that, but the dream didn't end. Not right away. I let her play on until she beat me, holding cards in my hand that I could have laid down many times, just to let her win.

    When I woke up, I didn't know whether to be happy or sad. I don't know if I believe in ghosts or not, but I know that it wasn't just a dream.

    In the end, I guess I felt good inside...I'm still upset about Grandpa, but at this point I'm resigned to just try and keep the thoughts of what used to be in my heart and even though it's sad that things will never be the same again, that at least I had that to remember. And just knowing that there might be times in the future when, out of nowhere, a dream might happen to come to me when I need it the most. I look forward to it...just playing cards with Grandma made me feel like everything will be all right.

    Submitted on 2005-01-18 19:20:21     Terms of Service / Copyright Rules
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    ||| Comments |||
      wow... this is so very close to home to me right now... my grandfather died this past october... 8 days before his and grandmas 59th wedding anniversary... i asked myself over and over what the point of marriage and all was if someone would have to die first...
    my grandma was really brave and really strong but i could tell she was really lost without grandpop... she didnt even out last him 3 months... i found her dead a coupla weeks ago... she just forgot to wake up...

    i am sorry for the reaction grandad has had and the way he is playing out his grief... i recognize that this will have a profound effect upon your family...

    your daughter seems to have enjoyed her playing card with grandma dream... for me it was always having cups of tea with God...

    awesome write... im really glad i stopped by to read this... take care of you all.
    | Posted on 2005-01-18 00:00:00 | by Someones Epiphany | [ Reply to This ]
      How old is your daughter? She must have an interesting perspective on things.
    The story was nice and touching - especially considering its life connections - but I feel it lacked the intensity I was expecting. Perhaps you could've strengthened the card playing allusion - give it a stronger implication to the story; some sort of symbolic meaning. The dream is fine and all, but play it harder.
    I suppose I should wish the best of luck to you guys. Don't think too much on him, though. I can sympathize with the fellow - only a few years of life left, if he's lucky, with his true love gone. If I were him I would ride myself as hard as I could, getting in as much pleasure as I could. Heck, I may be wiped clean and left with nothing, but that wouldn't matter when I am gone. Perhaps it's a selfish way to live life, but in the end it might be better to live selfishly.
    "Hello darkness, my old friend..."
    You'll find a different perspective on the situation soon enough, I'm sure.
    | Posted on 2005-01-18 00:00:00 | by Eggman | [ Reply to This ]

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